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Federal Judge Orders L.A. Times to Alter Story on Glendale Detective, Sparking Protest From Newspaper

John Saro Balian is seen in a 2006 Los Angeles Times file photo taken after he became a Glendale police spokesman.

John Saro Balian is seen in a 2006 Los Angeles Times file photo taken after he became a Glendale police spokesman.

A federal judge on Saturday ordered the Los Angeles Times to remove information from an article that described a plea agreement between prosecutors and a Glendale police detective accused of working with the Mexican Mafia, a move the newspaper decried as highly unusual and unconstitutional.

The agreement was supposed to have been filed under seal, but it was mistakenly made available on PACER, a public online database for federal court documents.

In response to the order from U.S. District Judge John F. Walter, The Times revised the article to eliminate information about the sealed document. The Times filed an emergency motion Sunday night to stay the judge’s order.

“We believe that once material is in the public record, it is proper and appropriate to publish it if it is newsworthy,” said Norman Pearlstine, executive editor of the Los Angeles Times.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.